Going to Europe for two weeks

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by ViPa, Aug 6, 2009.

  1. ViPa macrumors 6502a

    Dec 4, 2007
    heading all over europe for two weeks on vacation..whats the best way to avoid data roaming charges? i turned off data roaming already..i plan on using wifi often with skype..i just wanna make sure i dont use any sort of data
  2. guydude193 macrumors 6502a

    May 15, 2009
    You could turn it on Airplane mode when you're not using it. It'll also shut off the phone, but if you need to use it, you can turn it back on.
  3. Greenman85 macrumors regular

    Jun 16, 2009
    can you use wireless while on airplane mode? wouldnt it just turn the iphone into an itouch? thx
  4. CocoaPuffs macrumors 68010

    Aug 23, 2008
    Unlock the phone and buy a local sim card, and use Google Voice to make calls.
  5. kasei macrumors 6502a


    Dec 30, 2003
    Los Angeles, CA
    I am headed to Japan in three weeks and called AT&T to check on international roaming charges and was shocked at the scam they have going. You can get the World Traveler plan for $5.99, but you have to also pay a per minute rate which is not covered under your current rate plan: http://www.wireless.att.com/travelguide/coverage/product_rates_compare.jsp?PIDL=IRSD|IRWT

    Oh and it keeps getting better. Despite having unlimited data and text plans you will still have to get an international data and text plan for receiving and sending data while you are in Europe.

    Even though we have these really great devices I recommend renting a phone when you get there and using Skype via wifi with your phone in airplane mode if you really want to use your iPhone.
  6. ozzyman500 macrumors 65816

    Feb 4, 2009
    I just went over to Germany a few months ago. I had my phone on airplane mode for 98% of the 2 weeks I was there. For those few calls I made it wasn't a ridiculous bill for AT&T.
  7. curly14 macrumors regular


    Jun 11, 2009
    What a racket I know went to Mexico and use data lucky I added the Int Data plan otherwise it would have been a nice $500.+ bill just for data:eek:
  8. tivoboy macrumors 68040

    May 15, 2005
    not sure

    I dont' think you can use google voice on the iphone unless it is jailbroken? With a local sim, there wouldn't be really any advantage either, better to use Skype for making calls back home.

    Yes, in airplane mode, one can turn on wireless. Then just connect to AP's and use the phone to get mail, use apps and make calls with skype or fring. There is a pretty substantial thread on this already, maybe do a search for all the details there.
  9. cschilderink macrumors newbie

    Nov 25, 2003
    I was just in Europe for a month. I had the $5.99 international rate plan. I turned off all my data, sent maybe 20-30 texts, 250min. My phone bill was $300.

    My suggestion would be to buy a SIM card over seas. "What's Up" is a good provider they may only be in Greece though. But for instance you can get a 30 euro cheap phone get a 20 euro SIM card and have 500min to use whenever and call wherever. This would definitively be the cheapest way to make phone calls while in europe.
  10. ViPa thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Dec 4, 2007
    im not in any dire need to make calls..i figure ill just use skype when i have wifi and call the gf every now and then..im not sure it'll be worth unlocking and all that stuff..i just wanna ensure no data roaming charges..i heard its crazy high
  11. tivoboy macrumors 68040

    May 15, 2005
    other thread

    Read the other thread if you can find it. one of the things I HATE about AT&T and the way their technology and billing works is, if you TURN ON the phone while in Europe and have say, five emails. You'll be billed at LEAST for five minutes or most likely certainly more, JUST to have the VM alert come through - which it will, unless you turn off the phone.
  12. techiegirl macrumors 65816


    Sep 7, 2007
    I switched to airplane mode. Also just to be sure, I also removed the sim card. Wifi works fine in airplane mode.
  13. fedup flyer macrumors regular

    Jan 18, 2008
    No you won't and you don't know what your talking about. VVM relies on data and can be retrieved by turning ON data roaming. Most VM run about 10k unless they ramble on. You phone will be able to tell you you have VM waiting with the data OFF but it will not tell you how many VMs and might take a few hours to register to the system to find the VM. The only time VM would cause minutes to be racked up on your phone is when you actually call the VM.
    I have been traveling around the world with my iphone over the past 2 yrs so I would say I have a little experience with the data roaming, VM, VVM and voice roaming.

    To the OP. Simple answer. Turn off data roaming and it does just that. Data off = no data roaming charges.
    Also, you can by a 20mb intl data package. I find this easier than trying to find a hotspot and if I remember correctly, just about every country in Europe is covered under AT&T data roaming. If you plan to use the voice portion of your phone will in Europe, make sure you call AT&T and let them know you would like int'l voice roaming turned on. This MUST be done BEFORE you leave the US. I would also suggest the world traveler plan that goes for around $5.99. It drops the rates in most EU countries by $.10 or more.
    Also, next time do a search as I have covered this info before along with several other posters.
  14. tivoboy macrumors 68040

    May 15, 2005

    All I can say is, I have been doing this for nearly a decade now with my AT&T phones, iphone included. The ONLY time I turn it on is to make a call, and I check my VM with skype (or a local sim) before making the call. The times I have turned it on, and there WAS A vm, I was charged for the VM alert. Granted, the iphone does this a bit differently, but the charge was a round turn, meaning if a call came in and I didn't answer it, that was one minute charge and when the VM alert hit, that another one minute charge. This was all over europe.

    So, I do use a german sim when in Germany and a UK sim when in the UK. but, that requires unlocking and/or a different phone. These days, I just carry an older nokia 8900 to use when abroad for my voice side.

    I would recommend getting a truly international sim, united-mobile is basically OFF at the moment, but maxroam and searome are on. They simply charge .50$ anywhere they cover (about 200 countries) in or out. That is what I use now for international travel.

    If anyone wants to see what the billing looks like for the VM alerts, lemme know and I can try to dig em up. It is annoying, but the one good thing is, if this is the first time is happens to you, AT&T will remove them "one time only" but of course if you make calls that is billed as usual.
  15. CocoaPuffs macrumors 68010

    Aug 23, 2008
    If your phone is unlocked, then it is jailbroken, which is the best course of action when traveling oversea.

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